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LauraS

Cruise Critic News: Carnival Fascination, Imagination Removed from Carnival Cruises Fleet Roster

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(4:19 p.m. EDT) -- Carnival Cruise Line has further reduced the likelihood of Carnival Fascination and Carnival Imagination returning to service for the line after the ships disappeared from an organizational flyer, updated in August 2020, showing the line's various classes of vessels. Carnival Corporation & plc, the parent company of Carnival ...

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Further reduction of Fantasy-class ships not a surprise.  

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45 minutes ago, jimbo5544 said:

Not a surprise, but still sad.  

To paraphrase Dion, "Here's my story, sad but true, about a ship that I once knew."

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45 minutes ago, jimbo5544 said:

Not a surprise, but still sad.  


I agree.  I’m gonna be real sad when the fascination goes, I sailed her last June 2019 for my niece’s college graduation celebration cruise.  We had a blast on that cruise.  

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Just now, ontheweb said:

To paraphrase Dion, "Here's my story, sad but true, about a ship that I once knew."

Do not quite recall it going quite like that....  but maybe it is just me

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Also, with carnival abandoning the fascination, that mirrors them also abandoning sailing out of the port of San Juan Puerto Rico too.  That makes me even more sad because that was my favorite Caribbean cruise route.

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5 minutes ago, BeachDiva101 said:


I agree.  I’m gonna be real sad when the fascination goes, I sailed her last June 2019 for my niece’s college graduation celebration cruise.  We had a blast on that cruise.  

We sailed on her a few years ago, and also had a blast. The mix of passengers from Puerto Rico made it a lively ship which was especially noticeable if you attended dances.

 

DW and I have a totally different attitude about dancing. She wants to get the steps perfect while I just want to let the music move me. The locals on the ship supported my viewpoint LOL. (The funny thing is we first started taking lessons after I saw people enjoying themselves dancing on a ship and we joined in despite not knowing any steps. The dancers encouraged us despite our lack of knowledge.)

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@ontheweb    I took this same cruise 5 yrs ago on the Liberty and we did not leave SJPR until 10pm, so we spent the day in old San Juan .  It was a Sunday and after church, all the locals go to old San Juan and dance in the streets to all the local bands.  It was so fun to watch all the people dance and have such a good time.  And it was ALL age groups out dancing.  Then 2 older couples made us go and dance. It was a fun day. 

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20 hours ago, stobe1 said:

I am suprised that @xDisconnections hasnt swung by this thread yet like (s)he does on every Fantasy class thread to say good riddance or something along those lines.  😉

 I would rather read this than the ones of people that say they set and cry for days about a  ship that is scrapped . Give me a break . Its a ship . Life will go on . Trust me I have  tons of  memories on a lot of ships  but in the scheme of things  its a big piece of metal . The crew and the itinerary make the week , not the piece of metal I go on .  Just my opinion . 

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Posted (edited)
10 minutes ago, frito58 said:

 I would rather read this than the ones of people that say they set and cry for days about a  ship that is scrapped . Give me a break . Its a ship . Life will go on . Trust me I have  tons of  memories on a lot of ships  but in the scheme of things  its a big piece of metal . The crew and the itinerary make the week , not the piece of metal I go on .  Just my opinion . 

Sadly, there is very little awareness but the general public doesn’t understand how damaging these rust buckets can be towards the brand. For Carnival to remain competitive and relevant, they need to improve the brand’s image, create better opinions and provide more personalized, immersive experiences. They can’t do that with a fleet near end-of-life and ships that are older than me.

 

There’s a reason why the Holiday class ships are no longer part of Carnival’s fleet and soon, the Fantasy class will be gone as well. It’s progress and a step in the right direction. The only sad part of scrapping ships would be the loss of available jobs in the industry and surrounding industries but new ships, when revenue allows, would create more jobs once the cruise lines begin to rebound.

 

This is a move they need to make in an attempt to capture other areas of the market share that are currently sailing on their competitors or even through land-based options. Their primary competitor is using Freedom class ships consistently for their short cruise market which provides a budget based lead in price, upsell opportunities to premium staterooms, a higher amount of upsell options onboard for passengers trying to have a premium experience on their weekend getaway and more shipboard experiences available to provide an incentive to return on a longer cruise and maybe try and Oasis class ship. What can Carnival provide... a three day cruise on the Ecstasy where the only thing to do onboard is drink and eat food that is banquet quality at best?

Edited by xDisconnections

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18 minutes ago, xDisconnections said:

Sadly, there is very little awareness but the general public doesn’t understand how damaging these rust buckets can be towards the brand. For Carnival to remain competitive and relevant, they need to improve the brand’s image, create better opinions and provide more personalized, immersive experiences. They can’t do that with a fleet near end-of-life and ships that are older than me.

 

There’s a reason why the Holiday class ships are no longer part of Carnival’s fleet and soon, the Fantasy class will be gone as well. It’s progress and a step in the right direction. The only sad part of scrapping ships would be the loss of available jobs in the industry and surrounding industries but new ships, when revenue allows, would create more jobs once the cruise lines begin to rebound.

 

This is a move they need to make in an attempt to capture other areas of the market share that are currently sailing on their competitors or even through land-based options. Their primary competitor is using Freedom class ships consistently for their short cruise market which provides a budget based lead in price, upsell opportunities to premium staterooms, a higher amount of upsell options onboard for passengers trying to have a premium experience on their weekend getaway and more shipboard experiences available to provide an incentive to return on a longer cruise and maybe try and Oasis class ship. What can Carnival provide... a three day cruise on the Ecstasy where the only thing to do onboard is drink and eat food that is banquet quality at best?

Very valid points - Had a great time on the fascination, but Freedom class on Royal is a different level and Carnival cannot compete with that on a fantasy class ship.

 

But maybe they are not competing and are happy in there Niche??

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2 minutes ago, Stick93 said:

Very valid points - Had a great time on the fascination, but Freedom class on Royal is a different level and Carnival cannot compete with that on a fantasy class ship.

 

But maybe they are not competing and are happy in there Niche??

Same price for lead-in, same ports, same dates. They’re competing for market share and targeting the same audience. The individual ships would appear on the compset for revenue management. 

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22 minutes ago, Stick93 said:

Very valid points - Had a great time on the fascination, but Freedom class on Royal is a different level and Carnival cannot compete with that on a fantasy class ship.

 

But maybe they are not competing and are happy in there Niche??

While I would agree that the two ships are dramatically different, it appeared that Carnival did not have problems filling the ship, which goes to bolster their view that in this specific case, the cruise ship has little to do with the “ship”.  I questioned some internal “friends” on this very topic a few years back and this was their response.  

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21 minutes ago, xDisconnections said:

Same price for lead-in, same ports, same dates. They’re competing for market share and targeting the same audience. The individual ships would appear on the compset for revenue management. 

I agree with you - Not sure everyone thinks like this. 

There is belief that Carnival is a different product and different vibe. I have always had fun on carnival and they are differences in the products but the over all experience is really the same. 

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Posted (edited)
15 minutes ago, jimbo5544 said:

While I would agree that the two ships are dramatically different, it appeared that Carnival did not have problems filling the ship, which goes to bolster their view that in this specific case, the cruise ship has little to do with the “ship”.  I questioned some internal “friends” on this very topic a few years back and this was their response.  

Over capacity and high demand at the time for cruising. Every ship sailed full.

 

Upon return, they’ll be floating by on future cruise credits being redeemed — revenue they previously acquired and have. It won’t be new money coming in. That is assuming they don’t file for bankruptcy and still have an obligation to commit to these credits and then onboard credits.

 

Let me ask you a question though:

For a short 3/4 day cruise, at the same price, which do you think will have the highest value? Which of the below compsets would you choose for that particular itinerary? And why?

 

Independence/Amped Navigator/Amped Mariner or Sensation/Ecstasy/Elation/Paradise? 

Edited by xDisconnections

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9 minutes ago, Stick93 said:

I agree with you - Not sure everyone thinks like this. 

There is belief that Carnival is a different product and different vibe. I have always had fun on carnival and they are differences in the products but the over all experience is really the same. 

100% with you there.

 

For the most part, I have enjoyed nearly all of my Carnival cruises except the few at the end. And I’ve been on a lot of Carnival cruises but many would find that hard to believe.

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The Fantasy class was only around for market share. They were not commanding large fares, they have less upsell options, it costs more to sail them than the larger ships. As their competition reduces their fleet, it is safe for them to do so too.

 

I, too really hope that they make a more premium option out of PR. It's hard to say what really makes sense. Does cruising get damaged beyond repair here? Could Carnival attract more people to sail out of PR on a bigger ship? Give me a different option and you have my sale at least. Otherwise, my next San Juan cruise would probably be on the Freedom

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55 minutes ago, xDisconnections said:

Over capacity and high demand at the time for cruising. Every ship sailed full.

 

Upon return, they’ll be floating by on future cruise credits being redeemed — revenue they previously acquired and have. It won’t be new money coming in. That is assuming they don’t file for bankruptcy and still have an obligation to commit to these credits and then onboard credits.

 

Let me ask you a question though:

For a short 3/4 day cruise, at the same price, which do you think will have the highest value? Which of the below compsets would you choose for that particular itinerary? And why?

 

Independence/Amped Navigator/Amped Mariner or Sensation/Ecstasy/Elation/Paradise? 

The ship is much more important to me, but destination sometimes takes over.  To directly Answer your question, there is not enough shop there to make me take the Royal ships.  My wife, who most def has a say would tell me to keep looking.  

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20 minutes ago, Joebucks said:

The Fantasy class was only around for market share. They were not commanding large fares, they have less upsell options, it costs more to sail them than the larger ships. As their competition reduces their fleet, it is safe for them to do so too.

 

I, too really hope that they make a more premium option out of PR. It's hard to say what really makes sense. Does cruising get damaged beyond repair here? Could Carnival attract more people to sail out of PR on a bigger ship? Give me a different option and you have my sale at least. Otherwise, my next San Juan cruise would probably be on the Freedom

They must know, but I would def do the southern route again if the had, say the Dream going out of SJ (or any conquest class ship).  

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2 minutes ago, jimbo5544 said:

They must know, but I would def do the southern route again if the had, say the Dream going out of SJ (or any conquest class ship).  

They tried adding a larger ship there. The consistent $249 fares for a 7 day cruise when the competition and unsold staterooms didn't leave it practical.

 

Destiny to Victory to Valor to Liberty to Fascination.

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1 hour ago, xDisconnections said:

Sadly, there is very little awareness but the general public doesn’t understand how damaging these rust buckets can be towards the brand. For Carnival to remain competitive and relevant, they need to improve the brand’s image, create better opinions...

I have a LOT of great memories from my cruises aboard Fantasy class ships over the years, but I agree that this class of ship is not representative of today's Carnival brand. Not so much because of their age, but because they were not receiving the maintenance and refurbishments truly necessary to keep them up to speed. Our last Carnival cruise (aboard the Fantasy in 2019) was a lot of fun, but they ship looked sadly neglected, with countless maintenance issues, and cheaply performed patch works. 

 

And that shoddy, old, and poorly maintained image is what a lot of people who either have not sailed on Carnival's newest ships (or on Carnival at all) have in their mind. It saddens me to see the Fantasy class go, first because of the wonderful memories, and also because some smaller ports of embarkation may be affected with their departure, but it is time for them to go and for Carnival to embrace the future as we move past the pandemic.

 

 

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36 minutes ago, Joebucks said:

I, too really hope that they make a more premium option out of PR. It's hard to say what really makes sense. Does cruising get damaged beyond repair here? Could Carnival attract more people to sail out of PR on a bigger ship? 

Other cruise lines seem to think that San Juan is still viable. Freedom of the Seas, Norwegian Epic, Celebrity Summit, and Empress of the Seas are scheduled to return to San Juan, and Disney has also announced a handful of sailings out of San Juan for 2021. Smaller upscale cruise lines like Windstar are also returning. Looks like Carnival is the only one giving up on San Juan for the time being. 

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